Key tips offered for making your printing greener

With printing continuing to play a key role in the day-to-day operations of many businesses, a large number of environmentally-conscious firms may be considering how best they can align this necessity with their green policies.

Despite some predictions that suggested greater use of digital technology and mobile gadgets like tablets would spell the end for printed materials, this shows no signs of coming to pass any time soon. And as a result of this, questions will need to be asked about how firms can make their operations as eco-friendly as possible.
That's why some key tips on what businesses can do to make their printing greener have been offered by Digital Trends, which noted there are several simple changes that firms can make when using devices like colour laser printers to ensure they are not wasting paper, ink or electricity.

how to print greener

Embrace duplex

One of the best ways of cutting down on paper usage is to turn duplex printing on by default. This means the printer will use both sides of a sheet of paper when producing multiple-page documents, potentially cutting your paper usage in half.
If your printer has an automatic duplex setting, this is likely to be found under the Printer Preferences section, Digital Trends noted. Some older models may only have a manual duplexing option, however, which will require the user to physically turn their paper around and reinsert it into the machine.

Do you really need to print that?

One of the biggest causes of wastage in printing comes from users automatically clicking print without thinking about whether they really need certain details including in their hard copies.
Digital Trends noted: "Unwanted footers, useless images and segments of unneeded text are all great examples. Often, these are printed just because they're there, even when the person printing the documents doesn’t need them."
Putting in place policies to encourage staff members to think carefully about this can pay dividends. The publication noted even making sure users check Print Preview before sending their document to the printer can help identify what isn't needed and can be cut out.

Think about the format of your docs

Often, a lot of paper can be wasted when documents are sent to the printer that contain large areas of blank space. But with a few tweaks to the formatting settings, you can often greatly cut down on the number of pages you need - particularly for longer documents.
For instance, Digital Trends noted that default margin settings are often much bigger than what's really necessary. "Most printers can handle tighter margins than the default, and reducing the margins will let you add more words to the page, which in turn decreases the size of the print job," it noted. Reducing margin sizes to three-quarters to half an inch in the Page Setup box can give a good boost to the printable area, but still provides some framing for the page.
Reducing the font size and spacing within a document can also have an impact on the amount of paper your office gets through. So if you usually print in size 12, cutting this down to size 10 and reducing double-spaced paragraphs breaks to singular ones can make a big difference.
Careful use of fonts can also help you make big savings on ink costs, the publication noted. There are a range of 'eco fonts' available - often for free - that are thinner than standard options, so you can use less ink, but without affecting the overall readability of your text.

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